|Frequency||Weekly / Monthly|
|Format||Paper and online magazine|
80,000 (Connect! On)
|Publisher||Enterbrain, Inc., Tokuma|
|First issue||June 1986|
Famitsu, formerly Famicom Tsūshin, is a line of Japanese video game magazines published by Enterbrain, Inc. and Tokuma. Famitsu is published in both weekly and monthly formats as well as in the form of special topical issues devoted to only one console, video game company, or other theme. Shūkan Famitsū, the original Famitsū publication, is considered the most widely read and respected video game news magazine in Japan. From October 28, 2011 Enterbrain began releasing the digital version of the magazine exclusively on BookWalker weekly.
Video game journalism is a branch of journalism concerned with the reporting and discussion of video games, typically based on a core "reveal–preview–review" cycle. There has been recent growth in online publications and blogs.
Tokuma Shoten Publishing Co., Ltd. is a publisher in Japan, headquartered in Shinagawa, Tokyo. The company was established in 1954 by Yasuyoshi Tokuma in Minato, Tokyo. The company’s product portfolio includes music publishing, video game publishing, movies, anime, magazines, manga and books.
Enterbrain (エンターブレイン), formerly Enterbrain, Inc., is a Japanese publisher and brand company of Kadokawa Corporation founded on January 30, 1987 as ASCII Film Co., Ltd.. Magazines published by Enterbrain are generally focused on video games and computer entertainment as well as video game and strategy guides. In addition, the company publishes a small selection of anime artbooks. Enterbrain is based in Tokyo, Japan, with a paid-in capital of 410 million yen. Enterbrain's current president is Hirokazu Hamamura.
The first issue of Famitsū was published on June 6, 1986 as Famicom Tsūshin .. It was published semiregularly thereafter, going through periods of monthly, bimonthly, and quarterly publication. On July 19, 1991 (issue #136) the magazine was renamed to Shūkan Famicom Tsūshin and issues were published weekly thereafter. Alongside the weekly magazine, a monthly version called Gekkan Famicom Tsūshin was also published. At the start of 1996 (with issue #369) the magazines underwent another name change, truncating their titles to Shūkan Famitsū and Gekkan Famitsū
The magazine was published by ASCII from its founding through March 2000 when it was sold to Enterbrain, Inc.
The name Famitsū is a portmanteau abbreviation of Famicom Tsūshin; the word "Famicom" itself comes from a portmanteau abbreviation of "Family Computer" (the Japanese name for the Nintendo Entertainment System)—the dominant video game console in Japan during the 1980s. The first issue was published on June 6, 1986. Today, Shūkan Famitsū features multi-platform coverage. Shūkan Famitsū is a weekly publication concentrating on video game news and reviews, and is published every Thursday with a circulation of 500,000 per issue. Gekkan Famitsū is published monthly.
The Nintendo Entertainment System is an 8-bit home video game console developed and manufactured by Nintendo. It is a remodeled export version of the company's Family Computer (FC) platform in Japan, also known as the Famicom for short, which launched on July 15, 1983. The NES was launched through test markets in New York City and Los Angeles in 1985, before being given a wide release in the rest of North America and parts of Europe in 1986, followed by Australia and other European countries in 1987. Brazil saw only unlicensed clones until the official local release in 1993. In South Korea, it was packaged as the Hyundai Comboy and distributed by SK Hynix which then was known as Hyundai Electronics; the Comboy was released in 1989.
A video game console is a computer device that outputs a video signal or visual image to display a video game that one or more people can play.
Famitsū magazine covers alternately feature pop idols or actresses on even-numbered issues and the Famitsū mascot, Necky the Fox in odd-numbered issues. Year-end and special editions all feature Necky dressed as popular contemporary video game characters. Necky is the cartoon creation of artist Susumu Matsushita, and he takes the form of a costumed fox. The costumes worn by Necky reflect current popular video games. Necky's name was chosen according to a reader poll, and it derives from a complex Japanese pun: "Necky" is actually the reverse of the Japanese word for fox, キツネ, and his original connection to Famicom Tsūshin is intended to evoke the bark of the fox, the Japanese onomatopoeia of which is コンコン . Necky makes a cameo appearance in Super Mario Maker .
Susumu Matsushita is a Japanese manga artist known for his unique American comic–influenced design. His most famous works are the designing of the mascot Neppe of Orix Buffaloes, Motor Toon Grand Prix, Hudson's Adventure Island series, Monkey Magic and the Maximo: Ghosts to Glory concept arts.
Super Mario Maker is a side-scrolling platform game and game creation system developed and published by Nintendo for the Wii U game console, which released worldwide in September 2015. Players are able to create and play their own custom courses, based on Super Mario Bros., Super Mario Bros. 3, Super Mario World and New Super Mario Bros. U, share them online, and download and play courses designed by other players. It was a celebration of the 30th anniversary since the release of Super Mario Bros. in 1985.
Famitsū publishes other magazines dedicated to particular consoles. Currently in circulation are:
Retrogaming, also known as classic gaming and old school gaming, is the playing or collecting of older personal computer, console, and arcade video games in contemporary times. Usually retrogaming is based upon systems that are obsolete or discontinued.
The Nintendo 3DS is a handheld game console produced by Nintendo. It is capable of displaying stereoscopic 3D effects without the use of 3D glasses or additional accessories. Nintendo announced the console in March 2010 and officially unveiled it at E3 2010 on June 15. The console succeeds the Nintendo DS, featuring backward compatibility with older Nintendo DS video games. Its primary competitor was the PlayStation Vita from Sony.
The Nintendo Switch is a video game console developed by Nintendo and was released on March 3, 2017. It is a hybrid console that can be used as both a stationary and portable device. Its wireless Joy-Con controllers, which include standard buttons and directional analog sticks for user input, motion sensing, and high-definition tactile feedback, can attach to both sides of the console to support handheld-style play. They can also connect to a Grip accessory to provide a traditional home console gamepad form, or be used individually in the hand like the Wii Remote and Nunchuk, supporting local multiplayer modes. The Nintendo Switch's software supports online gaming through standard Internet connectivity, as well as local wireless ad hoc connectivity with other Switch consoles. Nintendo Switch games and software are available on both physical flash-based ROM cartridges and digital distribution via Nintendo eShop; the system does not use region locking. As an eighth-generation console, the Nintendo Switch competes with Microsoft's Xbox One and Sony's PlayStation 4.
Famitsū spin-offs that are no longer in circulation include:
Video games are graded in Famitsū via a "Cross Review" in which a panel of four video game reviewers each give a score from 0 to 10 (with ten indicating the best game). The scores of the four reviewers are then added up for a maximum possible score of 40. From the twenty-four games awarded with a perfect score as of 2017 [update] , three are for the Nintendo DS and five are for the Wii. The PlayStation 3 also has five games with a perfect score and the Xbox 360 has four, with both consoles having four titles in common. The others are for different platforms with only one title each. Franchises with multiple perfect score winners include The Legend of Zelda with four titles, Metal Gear with three titles, and Final Fantasy with two titles. The most recent game to receive a perfect score is Dragon Quest XI .
As of 2016 [update] , all but two games with perfect scores are from Japanese companies, nine being published/developed by Nintendo, four by Square Enix, three by Sega, three by Konami and one by Capcom. As of 2016 [update] , the only two completely foreign games to achieve a perfect score are The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim by Bethesda Softworks and Grand Theft Auto V , from Rockstar Games. Other foreign games that have achieved near-perfect scores are L.A. Noire , Red Dead Redemption and Grand Theft Auto IV – all three of which came from Rockstar Games; Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 , Call of Duty: Black Ops , and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 – all from Activision, although published by Square Enix in Japan; and Gears of War 3 from Epic Games. ( Kingdom Hearts II is a joint effort between Square Enix and Disney Interactive Studios.)
Famitsu administers the Famitsu awards. Video games receive a number of different awards in categories like Innovation, Biggest Hit, Rookie Award, Highest Quality, etc. One or two "Game of the Year" awards are granted as the top prize. Top prize winners are determined by a combination of critical and fan review scores as well as sales figures.
UK trade magazine MCV and Famitsu have an exclusive partnership which sees news and content from each magazine appear in the other.
ASCII (アスキー) was a monthly released microcomputer magazine in Japan, published by ASCII Corporation from 1977. It targeted for business users who used a personal computer in their home and office, but it sometimes introduced computer games and computer musics. It was also known as the Monthly ASCII (月刊アスキー) written along with the title from Vol. 2 No. 4, and distinguish with the Weekly ASCII (週刊アスキー) founded in 1997. The ASCII was rebranded as the Business ASCII (ビジネスアスキー) in 2008, and ceased in 2010. Its news website and the Weekly ASCII are continuing as in 2016.
Arc System Works Co., Ltd. is a video game developer and publisher based in Yokohama, Japan. Founded by Minoru Kidooka in 1988, Arc System Works is known for its arcade 2D fighting game franchises, Guilty Gear and BlazBlue, as well as other licensed-based fighting games from Shueisha/Shonen Jump's Dragon Ball and Atlus's Persona 4 Arena.
Whomp 'Em, the North American version of the Japanese game Saiyūki World 2: Tenjōkai no Majin(西遊記ワールド2 天上界の魔神, lit. "Saiyūki World 2: Evil Spirit of Heaven") (1990), is a platform video game released on the NES in March 1991.
Summer Carnival '92: Recca, commonly referred to as Recca, is a 1992 scrolling shooter video game developed by KID and published by Naxat Soft for the Family Computer.
Famicom Wars is a wargame produced by Nintendo. It was released on August 12, 1988 for the Family Computer in Japan. It was later re-released on Virtual Console. It is the first game in the Wars series.
Hect (ヘクト) or Hector was a Japanese video game developer and publisher. It was developing a game, Virtual Battle Ball for the Virtual Boy, eventually canceled.
Assault Suit, also known as Assault Suits, is a series of futuristic robotic war video games developed by NCS featuring soldiers manning the eponymous gigantic humanoid mecha. Spanning the course of 15 years and beyond, the games would be cross-distributed, cross-published and developed between the U.S. and Japan. It would be known as one of the most challenging series to follow due to the drastic changes from game to game.
Metal Max is a video game series, originally created in 1991 by video game designer Hiroshi Miyaoka's company Crea-Tech in collaboration with Data East, with the latter being also the publisher of the series. Due to the bankruptcy of Data East and trademark problems, some titles were released by Success co. under the title Metal Saga. Since the trademark issue was resolved by Enterbrain, some games in the series has been released under the title Metal Max again.
Karnov's Revenge, also titled Fighter's History: Dynamite in Japan, is a 1994 fighting game developed by Data East, released for the Neo Geo. It's the second game in the Fighter's History series. The game was later ported to the Neo Geo, Neo Geo CD and Sega Saturn home consoles.
Wonder Project J: Kikai no Shōnen Pīno is a Japan-exclusive video game published by Enix for the Super Famicom in 1994.
Akira (アキラ) is a 1988 adventure game 1988 by TOSE for the Famicom console exclusively in Japan. It is based on Akira, the 1988 animated film version of Katsuhiro Otomo's manga, Akira.
Dragon Slayer: The Legend of Heroes is a role-playing game developed by the Nihon Falcom. It is the sixth game in the Dragon Slayer line of games, and the first in The Legend of Heroes series.
Rendering Ranger R2 (レンダリング・レンジャーR2 (ダブルアール)) is a 1995 side scrolling action video game developed by Rainbow Arts and published by Virgin Interactive for the Super Famicom.
Kendo Rage, known in Japan as Makeruna! Makendō, is an action video game for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System/Super Famicom by Datam Polystar. Seta U.S.A. published the English version.
Tetris 2 is a video game published in 1993 and 1994 by Nintendo for the Game Boy, Nintendo Entertainment System and Super Nintendo Entertainment System.
The Japanese video game magazine Famitsū assigns scores to video games by having four reviewers each give a score from 0 to 10. The scores of the four reviewers are then added up for a maximum possible score of 40. From the twenty two games awarded with a perfect score as of 2016, three are for the Nintendo DS and five are for the Wii. The PlayStation 3 also has five games with a perfect score and the Xbox 360 has four, with both consoles having two titles in common. The others are for different platforms with only one title each. Franchises with multiple perfect score winners include The Legend of Zelda with four, Metal Gear with three, followed by Dragon Quest and Final Fantasy with two.
Cocoron is a 1991 video game developed by K2 and published by Takeru for the Famicom. A version for the PC Engine was announced, but was not released.
Hoshi wo Miru Hito is a 1987 Japanese video game for the Famicom home console. Developed by Another and published by HOT B, it is based on the 1984 video game Psychic City. The game is a science fiction role playing video game where players use psychic powers to defeat enemies.